An SUV lies on its roof Wednesday while a firefighter checks a Jeep following a collision on Sabattus Street in Lewiston. The identities of those involved were not immediately available later in the day. Mark LaFlamme/Sun Journal

LEWISTON — A nurse and a paramedic, both off-duty, came to the aid of several people hurt in a two-vehicle crash Wednesday evening on Sabattus Street.

According to witness accounts, a woman driving an SUV toward Lewiston about 5 p.m. and an oncoming Jeep collided as she prepared to make a left turn onto Dow Avenue, near South of the Border restaurant.

Her Kia SUV flipped onto its roof in the crash, leaving the driver upside down and surrounded by air bags that deployed on impact.

Amy Knowlton, a nurse at St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center in Lewiston, witnessed the crash, and she pulled into the South of the Border parking lot. By then, an EMT and another man were pushing their way around the air bags to get to the woman in the overturned SUV.

“I told her ‘turn your car off and don’t move'” Knowlton said. “I said, ‘Don’t take your seat belt off. You’re upside down and we don’t know if you have a neck injury or anything else.'”

While the EMT tended to the woman in the SUV, Knowlton went over to help a group of people in the Jeep. One man in that vehicle had struck his head on the windshield, Knowlton said. Another passenger, a woman was experiencing pain in her leg and foot.


Emergency crews arrived moments later.

Lewiston fire crews were able to free the woman from the SUV. Knowlton said the woman was walking around and didn’t appear to have suffered any life-threatening injuries.

Auburn Rescue sent an ambulance over to transport the victims to hospitals. Information about the drivers and their passengers was not immediately available Wednesday as police began an investigation into the wreck.

Knowlton said she has witnessed — and stopped to help at — several crashes along that stretch of Sabattus Street, and almost always at the late-day commuter hour. This was the first time she recalled that she had backup from an active paramedic in those first moments before emergency crews arrived.

“It was absolutely amazing,” she said.

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or login first for digital access. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.

filed under: